Consolidating – November 2016 Update

Since the last time I updated this site, several things have happened. Consolidating just a couple of things is going to save me over $800 a year. Here’s a list of the big 4 things that have happened in the last 2 months:

  1. Earned an A in MIT822 and EDL850 at FHSU
  2. Finished XC season and started swimming
  3. Left Verizon and moved to Virgin Mobile
  4. Consolidated multiple hosting packages into one

I’ve been busy and the by product of that is not much (observable) has happened on this website.

School

As mentioned above I’m doing well in my coursework towards my Masters in Instructional Technology. In fact due to a bug that kept popping up when I was submitting my assignments, I created a subdomain off of jetshack and am using it to post my assignments.

Coaching

October also saw the Cross Country season draw to an end and the start of the swimming season. While I enjoy coaching, the beginning and the end of every season is stressful and time consuming.

Cellphone

The third point I mentioned above I bring up because I feel that it relates to the… mission?? of this site and the point of this post – consolidating.  I had been with Verizon for over 14 years. I won’t go into the details of what prompted me to leave, but in the end I’ll be saving over $65 a month by making the switch. Passive income is awesome, but what’s even more awesome is finding in your budget that you don’t have to spend.

Consolidating items

Hosting

I own (owned) several websites located on several different servers. There was a site for my swimming team and another for the track and cross country team.  I had a site for my wife’s pom team and I also had a site where I talked about raspberry pi’s. This is in addition to my classroom site and this website.  The only one of these website’s which gets updated on a regular basis is my classroom site. So I decided to take down the three team websites and the one dedicated to the pi. This left me with only 2.

I had been hosting my classroom site and this site with different companies but since I decided to take the other 4 down there wasn’t any reason that I could see to continue hosting the sites on different servers.  So last night, I moved jetshack to my Namecheap hosting account.  This means I won’t need to pay the monthly fee of $4.99 that had been paying for hosting.

Now that it’s said and done, consolidating my hosting and switching mobile carriers I’ll be saving over $800 a year.  On a teachers salary that’s a HUGE deal.

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Change in Format

I’m making a change in how I add information to this site.  I’m realizing that I can’t maintain a twice a week post schedule and maintain quality in those posts.  My time is too limited. Also with as quick as these programs go in and out of fashion I absolutely won’t be able to keep up with keeping information on all of the programs that I use updated.

So, I’m going to make an attempt at creating quality pages over specific programs. These pages will be snapshots of how the program is currently working, if for some reason the program changes I won’t feel obligated to update the page to reflect this.

I’m currently working on an in depth review of the application called Qriket. My hope is to have it out at the end of this month.

This change in focus has been driven by the implosion (for me) of earnhoney and bing rewards. Over the last 30 days I’ve earned a grand sum total of $15.82 with earnhoney and Microsoft completely changing their rewards program works caused my earning with them to crater to nothing.

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Opportunity vs Frustration – It’s how you look at it

Last week was rough. Several of the programs that I use were hit with bad ads that brought earnings to a near halt. However, instead of becoming frustrated with the situation I looked at it as an opportunity to find new options.

Freaking Beauty and the Beast

Perk was hit with a nasty ad for Beauty and the Beast. I came home at one point and all 12 of my perk phones were stuck on that one ad. In the process of resetting the farm I started to laugh. Literally, by the time I had reset the 12 phones half of them were stuck on that ad again.

Beauty and the Beast Ad

The Beauty and the Beast ad also found it’s way into the passive Swagbucks apps. I also think I say it on Checkpoints once.

Rewardable TV – Being Awesome Again

One thing I noticed was that the two phones I just bought that were running Rewardable hadn’t been hit by the Beauty and the Beast ad. So, I looked up the ToS for RewardableTV and saw that I could run 7 devices on it. And so I jumped at that opportunity.

I also found a couple of new programs. One that looked intriguing was called Adfun. I’m currently testing it out on 3 phones to see how it works. Right now, I think I’m impressed (with a couple of caveats). If it works out Adfun could end up solving a HUGE problem that arises when large farms are hit with a bad ad across multiple programs. I should have a better idea on this by the end of the week. If it works out I’ll write more about it then.

New(ish) Fires on the way

Kindle Fire Opportunity

One other thing I noticed about the Beauty and the Beast ad was that it hadn’t showed up once on my Kindle Fire. This really made me want to get my hands on some more Fires.  I couldn’t justify spending $50 each on new ones so I stared scouring Craigslist and Ebay.  But I couldn’t find any there that I liked either.  And then I saw someone mention Amazon Warehouse Deals.  So I after googling that I was pleasantly surprised to find that Amazon offers refurbished Fires for $26 each.  So I bought 4 using giftcards I’d picked up through Swagbucks. (Every month I pick up 1 $25 Amazon gift card from Swagbucks because the first one purchased every month can be picked up for $22).  They should arrive in the next couple of days.

This means that in the next couple of days my PerkTV farm will be completely run on Amazon Fires.  This should give me the opportunity to have a big bump in my perk earnings. I’ll then see if any of the other Perk Apps will run on the Kindle.  If they do, then I’ll roll the additional Perk earnings into purchasing some more Fires.

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Best News in Years

I always turn my phone off when I’m in a meeting.  Not just to vibrate, but completely off.  I don’t like the distraction.

While I was driving home from a Physics conference in Alva, Oklahoma I noticed that I had a voice mail.  Someone had called me while I was in a meeting at the conference. Without a doubt some of the best news I’ve heard in a long long time.

 

I bleed Orange but in this case I was able to look past my school pride.

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A Decade of JetShack

I’ve had this website for over 10 years now.  I think it’s closer to 13 but I can’t remember for sure when the exact start date was.  I think it’s safe to assume that at some point between when jetshack.com was registered and today I’ve sort of grown up.  Without really realizing it this domain marked the starting point of the majority of my major life milestones.  Among other things I was married, had children, saw the loss of my father, and was diagnosed (and hopefully conquered) cancer.

For the last 5 or so years the website has been mostly forgotten.  Honestly I didn’t know what to do with it.   I’m not sure that I do now, but I think I’ve reached the point where I’m not that bothered by it not having a specific focus.

So today, I deleted everything that was on my server.  All the old databases with all the content from all the previous incarnations of the site.  All the static content that I thought I might someday want to put back up in a proper environment.  I deleted everything.  It was kind of cathartic.  And once that was all done I put a fresh install of WordPress on and…

We’ll see…

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